Instagram announced months ago that it was going to make age verification mandatory on the platform. The social media platform is now finally acting on the decision and making sharing your date of birth mandatory for all users.
The platform is also aiming to restrict access to kids below the age of 13 years.
“Before you can continue using Instagram, you need to provide your birthday, even if this account is for something like a business or pet,” a new notification on the app now reads for people who haven’t age verified themselves.
“This helps us protect younger people in our community. We’ll also use your birthday to help personalise your experience, including ads. It won’t be part of your public profile.”
Instagram’s age verification was an optional implementation when it started back in 2019. The platform then began to push prompts for users to verify their age. However, users were able to easily bypass these prompts until now. With the new update, the prompt to verify your age can now not be bypassed.
Fake birth dates may not work anymore
Users may try to enter a fake birth date on the app, but newer, more advanced, AI-based algorithms can now reportedly detect a user’s accurate age.
This is done with the help of elements like gathering your age entered in apps or games linked to Facebook, or analysing the birthday wishes a user gets.
Instagram’s parent company Meta also had plans to make a dedicated ‘Instagram for Kids’ application. However, the plans were dropped in September last year after a lot of criticism on how the app could increase Instagram’s use among kids.